Surgical Hernia Repair
Anyone who has the symptoms of a hernia, such as pain or a bulge, should consider having a hernia repair. All candidates for hernia repair are evaluated to identify factors that can be modified to minimize the risk of complications.
Hernia repair is conducted using one of two surgical approaches, both of which utilize a piece of synthetic, or prosthetic, mesh to reinforce the weakness in the abdominal wall. When expertly performed, both approaches result in a successful hernia repair.
Open Surgical Repair
The surgeon makes an incision directly over the hernia defect and sews the prosthetic mesh to the abdominal wall. The surgery is done on an outpatient basis, usually under local anesthesia with conscious sedation. This approach is very successful in the repair of small hernias.
Alternatively, a hernia may be repaired using a minimally invasive, or laparoscopic, approach performed while the patient is under general anesthesia. The surgeon inserts small tubes called cannulas through the abdominal wall at some distance from the hernia defect. A mesh prosthesis is then passed through one of the tubes into the abdomen and fixed to the undersurface of the abdominal wall with stitches and staples. This technique is used for both small and large hernias of the abdomen.